Next up in our series profiling EPCR Challenge Cup Pool B teams is Welsh region Dragons RFC.
EPCR Challenge Cup record
Dragons have gone as far as the semi-finals in the EPCR Challenge Cup, but have never reached the tournament’s showpiece game.
They have reached the last four on three occasions, in 2007, 2015 and 2016, losing out to ASM Clermont Auvergne (46-29), Edinburgh Rugby (45-16) and Montpellier Hérault Rugby (22-12) respectively.
Dragons failed to advance from EPCR Challenge Cup Pool B, losing all four of their games – against USAP (22-16), Lyon (41-28), Benetton Rugby (23-9) and Gloucester Rugby (26-21).
Head coach Dai Flanagan has led Dragons since Dean Ryan’s dismissal as director of rugby early this season.
Flanagan joined the club in the summer from fellow Welsh region Scarlets, where he had been backs coach since 2014. A fly-half as a player, he featured for both Cardiff Rugby and Ospreys.
🗓 One month to go
Not long now until we can enjoy some #ChallengeCupRugby!
Who are you backing to go all the way? pic.twitter.com/kOgCLVuBKE
— EPCR Challenge Cup (@ChallengeCup_) November 9, 2022
Welsh internationals are aplenty in Dragons’ set-up, not least amongst the forwards. Props Leon Brown, Rob Evans and Rhodri Jones have all represented the national side, as has long-serving hooker Elliot Dee.
Hooker Bradley Roberts joined from Ulster Rugby in the summer, with locks Ben Carter and Will Rowlands other key men. Back-row forwards Aaron Wainwright, Ross Moriarty, Ollie Griffiths and Taine Basham are further Welsh internationals.
In the backs, Argentina’s Gonzalo Bertranou and Wales’ Rhodri Williams are talented scrum-halves, with Sam Davies and JJ Hanrahan both options at fly-half. Wing Rio Dyer is an exciting prospect and earned his Wales debut this year.
Dragons start off their Pool B campaign at Emirates Lions on December 10, finishing their pool stage against the South African outfit at Rodney Parade on January 22.
In between, they have back-to-back games against Section Paloise, first in Wales on December 17 and then at Stade de Hameau on January 13.